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Keep Track of Your Congregation with iPhone

written by: Elton Gahr•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 6/29/2011

Keeping track of and connecting with the members of your church is not always easy, but if you use the iPhone it is possible to not only have the phone number of every member, but their address and even their needs. You can potentially share that information with all of the members as well.

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    Specialized apps are one of the reasons that the iPhone is such a great device. There is no way that a normal phone would ever have software that helped you manage your church membership. The iPhone does and for those few people who need it this is an extremely useful app that would never exist outside of a smartphone that lets you download programs.

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    There is no question that iChurch is the biggest and most robust of the church membership software iPhone apps. It is also the most expensive app and it is difficult to set up. It can be difficult because it requires a server to run which means that you will need to contact the company that made the app and set it up.

    In addition, the $49.99 price tag for this app means that you will want to be certain about it, but this allows access by members, gives people the ability to phone others in the app, set up small groups and even find the addresses of members and show you them on a map. With ideas such as pre-members and small groups this really is made for churches and isn’t simply an expensive way to keep your own contacts.

    So, if this can help to create a more connected church then $49.99 is well worth the money and if it can’t then the effort that it requires is going to be at least as much of an issue as the cost.

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    This is an app that is not so much created to keep track of the people in your church, but the difficulties that they are facing. Anyone who has ever spent any time with a pastor for more than a few minutes understands the value of this. Still, it does give you room to keep track of all the information that you might need to contact them such as addresses, phone numbers, names and of course the information about their problems.

    After you have filled out all the information you will have access not only to all of the ongoing needs, but also to a history of those issues that have already been resolved. This is a far more personal app than iChurch, but it has a lot of potential for someone who uses it all the time. Since it is free, it is far more likely to be an app you’ll try just to see if it helps, rather than a big purchase decision.

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    F1 Touch

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    The main point of membership records of any church is to ensure that people stay in contact with each other. F1 Touch is an app that anyone who owns an iPhone can download for free, but in order to use it the church must use the Fellowship One program. This involves a setup and monthly fee for the church. This also includes Fellowship One for the computer as well.

    The primary value of this app is to make phone calls, for those who already use the F1 software, easier. This makes it well worth downloading for anyone in a church that already uses this program and it may even help push the decision to use F1 software for your church. Still, some people have had trouble with the authentication of this app and are unable to connect to it because of that, so you may want to look into it carefully before you do anything with F1.

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    Fridge Door

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    Not actually created for managing church membership, this app is designed to help you set up groups for your own contacts. This means that you can put all of the members of your church together into a single list. This won’t give access to the list of everyone in your church like F1 and iChurch. Still, if you already have all of the members of your church in your contacts, or don’t mind spending a day adding them, then this is a good way to not only keep all of your contact information for your church, but to break them up into different home groups and keep notes about each of them as well.

    This is only one of a number of apps to help you manage your iPhone contacts, but since it is free and easy to use it is a good place to start, because, while the interface isn’t the easiest to use, it gives you a lot of additional options for your iPhone contacts. For churches one of the good options is the ability to send an email to everyone in a group. That way if you need to contact everyone quickly and easily you have a fast way to do it without having to be at home.

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    This is a very specific niche, but these four options are the best church membership iPhone apps. While none of them is perfect, they give some great options for helping to connect your church in the 21st century and anything that can help connect the members of your church together is going to be worth the effort.

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